This weekend, the French will vote in the primaries to nominate their Republican nominees for the 2017 Presidential elections. Anyone can vote in both the Socialist and the Republican primaries.
This is a first in the history of France, and a strategy used to ensure not only more transparency in the election process, but also to tackle the rise of the dreaded National Front, who managed to get through after the first round of elections in 2002.
But what do online conversations tell us about the candidates’ online popularity? Conversations around Sarkozy, Juppe and Fillon were analysed between 1st October 2016 and 9th November 2016 (I sadly did not have time to measure the other candidates’ share of voice). Additionally, I included Le Pen in the equation, given her increased prominence on the international scene of late.
Data shows that Sarkozy (35%), and Juppe (21%) received the greatest share of voice during the period, with Fillon (7%) lagging behind. Although Le Pen received the highest share of voice overall (37%), 50% of mentions occured on 9th November, but were mostly negative/ironic as seen below, resulting from her planned appearance on the Andrew Marr show.
Imaginez Trump , Poutine et Marine Le Pen mdr c’est des bz ils vont jouer au foot le samedi avec la bombe nucléaire
— Ilyes Djadel (@ilyesdjadeloff) November 9, 2016
imagine Le pen elle passe en 2017 et trump aussi, ça va être d’une noirceur leur conv pendant leur petit meeting (noirceur t’as compris)
— Jez (@Jesuance) November 8, 2016
Next, I compared the total number of mentions around Le Pen in France, the UK and the USA. Being part of the Anglo-Saxon community on Twitter, I felt that Le Pen had been receiving a great deal of American support. Scrunity of mentions however show that Le Pen more frequently talked about in the UK than in the US for now. It’ll be interesting to see how these mentions evolve as we head into 2017.